January 16, 2018

USGS releases new one-year earthquake hazard map

From the USGS Newsroom: For the first time, new USGS maps identify potential ground-shaking hazards from both human-induced and natural earthquakes. In the past, USGS maps only identified natural earthquake hazards.

This is also the first one-year outlook for the nation’s earthquake hazards, and is a supplement to existing USGS assessments that provide a 50-year forecast

“By including human-induced events, our assessment of earthquake hazards has significantly increased in parts of the U.S.,” said Mark Petersen, Chief of the USGS National Seismic Hazard Mapping Project. “This research also shows that much more of the nation faces a significant chance of having damaging earthquakes over the next year, whether natural or human-induced.”

For more information see, Induced Earthquakes Raise Chances of Damaging Shaking in 2016 | Science Features

Executive Order: Establishing a Federal Earthquake Risk Management Standard

On February 2, 2016, President Barack Obama committed to increase the nation’s resilience to earthquakes with an Executive Order that establishes a federal earthquake risk management standard.

The president signed the Executive Order as a result of a 2015 scientific assessment from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The survey shows that more than 143 million Americans in the continental U.S. could experience damaging earthquakes. This estimated number is nearly double the previous 2006 estimate because population has grown in earthquake-prone areas. The purpose of the Executive Order is to:

  • improve warning systems,
  • help with better building protections,
  • keep citizens informed to help them to mitigate their losses, injuries and deaths, and to
  • help communities recover faster.

For more information, or to read the Executive Order, see Executive Order: Establishing a Federal Earthquake Risk Management Standard at http://www.whitehouse.gov.

2016 National Earthquake Conference – Open for Registration

The 2016 National Earthquake Conference (NEC) is scheduled for May 4-6, 2016 in Long Beach, California. Registration is now open at www.earthquakeconference.org.

The NEC is a quadrennial event providing a unique opportunity for academia, building code experts, design/build professionals, FEMA Directorates, first responders, geologists, local emergency managers, insurance and reinsurance professionals, local and tribal governments, private sector interests, public information officers, state government leaders, social science practitioners, U.S. State and Territorial Earthquake Managers, USGS leadership, and volunteers to share the latest advances in earthquake science, best practices for outreach and education, building science and code advancement, and policy initiatives that improve resiliency.

For more information, visit www.earthquakeconference.org


HAZUS 3.0 now available…

FEMA recently announced the availability of HAZUS-MH 3.0, the latest iteration of their multi-hazard loss estimation software.  HAZUS-MH 3.0 includes several updates including:

  • Migration of the current database structure away from the Access (.mdb) and Personal Geodatabase (pGDB) format to SQL Spatial format
  • Migration of all VB6 code in the flood model to a combination of C# and .NET
  • Support for both homogeneous and dasymetric state data, with dasymetric data now serving as the default for analysis
  • Alignment with the Benefit Cost Analysis (BCA) tool (pushed from Task 2)
  • Updated, SQL-compatible version of CDMS
  • Repair of four major defects in block-level aggregation, and the flood and hurricane models

For more information, see  HAZUS 3.0 Updates at USEHAZUS.com.

FEMA NEHRP Report FY14 Report to Congress Now Available

The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP), which was first authorized by Congress in 1977, coordinates the earthquake-related activities of the Federal Government. The goal of NEHRP is to mitigate earthquake losses in the United States through basic and directed research and implementation activities in the fields of earthquake science and engineering. Under NEHRP, FEMA is responsible for developing effective earthquake risk reduction tools and promoting their implementation, as well as supporting the development of disaster-resistant building codes and standards. FEMA’s NEHRP activities are led by the FEMA Headquarters (HQ), Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Risk Reduction Division, Building Science Branch, in strong partnership with other FEMA HQ Directorates, and in coordination with the FEMA Regions, the States, the earthquake consortia, and other public and private partners. This report describes selected FEMA NEHRP accomplishments (HQ and Regional), followed by highlights from the States and U.S. territories and organizations which received FEMA support for NEHRP activities. The accomplishments described in this report showcase how FEMA and its partners, working in collaboration, continued to make progress toward earthquake loss-reduction nationwide.

Direct Download: http://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1445956390866-521590815d20178f79eba957fa0a7b44/NEHRP_Report_FY2014.pdf

Source: https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/33730

National Awards in Excellence – Western States Seismic Policy Council

The National Awards in Excellence are awarded every four years at the National Earthquake Conference (NEC) by WSSPC in partnership with the Northeast States Emergency Consortium (NESEC), the Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC), and the Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup (CREW). These awards recognize organizations and agencies in acknowledgment of their achievements as demonstrated through exemplary programs, projects, and products that address earthquake risk reduction within the United States. The highest ranked award will be given the Overall Award.

The 2016 National Awards in Excellence nomination period opens September 1, 2015 and closes January 4, 2016. For more details, and the 2016 Nomination Forms, see Call For Nominations.

For more information, National Awards in Excellence – Western States Seismic Policy Council.

USGS Release: New Simulations of 1811-1812 New Madrid Earthquakes

The US Geological Survey released today new Simulations of the 1811-12 New Madrid Earthquakes, indicating that future large earthquakes in the mid-west and central United States would produce major, prolonged ground shaking.

To see the release and simulations, visit: USGS Release: New Simulations of 1811-1812 New Madrid Earthquakes Show Strong and Prolonged Ground Shaking in Memphis and Little Rock (7/30/2015 2:00:00 PM).